Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Kugelized Meatball Sandwich

What is Kugel? Kugel is nothing more than a casserole that is made traditionally with noodles or potatoes. A Kugel can be sweet or savory it's up to you. It's a traditional Ashkenazi Jewish dish that is often served on Shabbis or other festivals. So why did I call this a Kugelized Meatball Sandwich? Heck why not I am Jewish and this is a type of noodle dish. 

I first saw a version of this dish on the Food Channel and I thought to myself that I could improve on what seemed to be a bland noodles dish. The original dish only had egg whites and cheese as ingredients. I kicked it up several notches. You be the judge. 

Ingredients and tools

2 half baking sheets 18 X 13
Parchment paper or foil 
Cooking Spray such as Pam
A few Bricks covered in Aluminum Foil

1.25-1.5 lbs of Spaghetti Rigati
14 egg whites
1 Very Large Onion Chopped
6 Chopped Garlic Cloves
1/2 Cup of Sun-dried Tomatoes in Olive Oil
6-8 Ounces Italian bread crumbs (or homemade)
3 handfuls of chopped Italian parsley
1.25-1.5 lbs of grated Mozzarella cheese
2 ounces of Parmesan cheese
As much or as little Italian seasoning  you desire (gotta love Red Pepper)
Salt and Pepper to taste

I don't have a picture capturing what I did in this step so I will attempt to describe it here. Saute the chopped onions in olive oil until slightly caramelized. Make sure to add salt and pepper to the onions while they saute. Love layering spices. Add garlic, sundried tomatoes, herbs spices and red pepper. Cook a few minutes and you're done. Make sure this is done a few minutes before your pasta is done cooking. 

Add the onion mixture to the pasta. The olive oil will prevent the noodles from sticking. After the pasta is completely cooled add the egg whites. You must use your hands to incorporate everything. If you use a fork or a spaghetti spatula it will break the pasta.  

Add the parsley and breadcrumbs. Make sure everything is incorporated. You can add or take away any ingredient. 

Add the cheeses. After you have thoroughly combine all the ingredients give it a taste and adjust if need be.

Place parchment or foil in pan and spray with cooking spray. I would have prefered parchment but I ran out. Toss in pasta and push out to the edges of the pan. Make sure every square inch of the pan is covered and is flat. 

Raise the sides up....Place another sheet on top. Top with the additional pan, press down with pan and weigh it down with foil covered bricks. Cook at 350 degrees for about 75-90 minutes. 

After it is cooled cut into squares or desired shapes.